A version of this article originally appeared in the December 2017 print issue of Paleo Magazine.

Hemp grows fast—very fast. The average red maple tree takes anywhere from 10 to 15 years to reach maturity, growing at a rate of just a foot or two per year; hemp, a variety of Cannabis sativa, can reach as high as 20 feet in 12 to 14 weeks. Perhaps this is why legend holds that the ninja of ancient Japan used hemp as

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